Mexican officials among plane crash victims

Mexican authorities were still investigating the cause of the crash.

Mexican officials among plane crash victims

A state minister, town mayor and six others from northern Mexico were killed on Wednesday when their small plane crashed and burst into flames most likely due to a mechanical failure, the state government said.

The minister for public works in Coahuila state, Horacio del Bosque, and the mayor of the border town of Piedras Negras, Jose Manuel Maldonado, died along with a state civil protection director, two businessmen, a photographer, the pilot and the co-pilot when their plane went down over a dam near Texas.

The crash was caused by mechanical failure and was not due to foul play or an attack by criminal gangs, Coahuila Education Minister Victor Zamora told the TV Azteca network.

Mexican media said the plane may have clipped a wing on a tree because it was flying too low, causing it to crash, but Zamora declined to comment or give further detail.

The Coahuila government confirmed the eight deaths in a statement but said authorities were still investigating the cause of the crash.

Mexican authorities are on high alert as drug gang violence escalates across the country. Cartel hitmen killed a candidate for governor in the northeastern state of Tamaulipas last week. Hitmen from the Gulf cartel and the brutal Zetas gang are fighting throughout Coahuila, Nuevo Leon and Tamaulipas for control of smuggling routes into Texas.

Zamora said the officials who died on Wednesday were surveying damage from Hurricane Alex, which powered into northern Mexico on Thursday and dumped heavy rains across the area, flooding the major Mexican city of Monterrey in the neighboring state of Nuevo Leon, where 12 people died.

Reuters

Güncelleme Tarihi: 08 Temmuz 2010, 17:33

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